Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Weekend Update: Pasadena Wine Festival October 3-4

The Pasadena Wine festival is this weekend: Sat and Sun at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden (310 N. Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA 91007, (626) 821-4623). The event consists of many of the Culturistas favorite things: Wine, food, live music and gorgeous scenery! There are tons of participating wineries this year (check out the list below) as well as the areas most renowned musical artists—playing jazz, funk, blues and salsa. Sounds like an awesome, Culturista-worthy, event!

Tickets: $55, $85 and $125. Get a one-day pass for $55- good for general wine tasting and food exhibit sampling. For $85, you get a two-day pass that includes all of the above, as well as an invitation to the Pasadena Wine Festival Kick-Off Party. Or the Preferred Pass for $125 per person that gets you admission both days, access to the VIP hospitality tent, and an invitation to all pre-festival wine-tasting events. You can purchase tickets to the event: Buy Tickets

Some Participating Wineries:

  • Oyster Bay, NZ
  • Carmel Road, CA
  • Chateau St Jean, Sonoma
  • Cambria, CA
  • Burgans Albarino, Spain
  • Banfi, Italy & South America
  • Gloria Ferrer, Still & Sparkling
  • Frank Family Red Truck Wines
  • Transat Trade French Imports
  • Robert Mondavi Winery
  • Prestige, Italy
October 3 & 4, 2009
4:30 pm -10 pm at the Los Angeles County Arboretum


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Hot Trends for Fall 2009 PART 1

Leather is a big trend this fall- from jackets, pants, and shorts, to gloves, and other accessories- it's all about leather. Designers such as Rodarte, Pucci and Jenni Kane showed tons of different leather options. So keep the jacket you bought last season- and stock up on some other leather goods to complete this look!

The ethnic look and the bohemian look have come together in this hot trend. Designers Diane Von Furstenberg, Matthew Williamson, Etro and Missoni exemplified this with their eclectic looks. Key pieces: a floppy knit cap, ethnic print clothing, long dresses, and funky jewelry. You can have a lot of fun with this look by mixing different prints and fabrics.

Fur is also popping up all over the runways and in stores for Fall 2009. From Forever 21 to Dolce and Gabanna you can stock up on real or faux fur. Other designers such as Christian Lacroix and Lanvin showed gorgeous pieces of fur that functioned like scarves or shawls.

Check out Part 2 of our Fall/Winter 2009 Fashion trends:HERE!


Sunday, September 27, 2009

Look of the week: Gwyneth Paltrow

Gwyneth Paltrow attends a private viewing of Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec's statement furniture this week in London. She is wearing all Burberry. But she's the Culturistas look of the week because she looks styled but not all decked out in matching designer gear. We love that each piece works together but doesn't necessarily go together. Very inspirational dressing Gwyneth!


Friday, September 25, 2009

Grown up Mac n' Cheese

This delicious Mac n' Cheese is a grown up twist on our childhood favorite. With three different cheeses and white truffle oil, this makes for a decadent meal! Double or quadruple the recipe to feed a party. This should serve around 2 people for dinner (with leftovers).


  • Vegetable oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 cups of cavatappi pasta
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 4 ounces (1/2 cup) Gruyere cheese, grated
  • 3 ounces (1/3 cup) extra-sharp Cheddar, grated
  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) gorgonzola, crumbled
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Pinch nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons white truffle oil
  • 1/2 cup Panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped or dried basil


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Drizzle oil into a large pot of boiling salted water. Add the macaroni and cook according to the directions on the package, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well.

Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don't boil it. Melt the butter in a medium pot and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. While whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a minute or 2 more, until thickened and smooth. Lower the heat and add the Gruyere, Cheddar, blue cheese, 1 teaspoon salt, pepper, nutmeg and truffle oil. Add the cooked macaroni and stir well. Pour into baking dish.

Sprinkle panko and chopped basil over the top of the pasta. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the macaroni is browned on the top.


Thursday, September 24, 2009


The 47th annual New York Film Festival is about to begin and the Culturistas could not be more excited! September 25-October 11 the Film Society of Lincoln center will be presenting a superb variety of films from the American and International cinema. The festival will include revivals of classics such as The Wizard of Oz and international features from China, Japan, Portugal, Israel, Denmark, Germany, and several other countries. October 2-4 will be screenings of noteworthy Avant-Garde films.




Screenings will be in the Walter Reade Theatre and Alice Tully Hall which are both part of Lincoln Center. This outstanding and diverse film festival only comes around one time per year so check out the NEW YORK FILM FESTIVAL CALENDAR. There are special student and member prices and they can either be purchased online or at the box offices.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Cheap and Chic finds of the week: Stirrup Belts

Forever 21
Aimee Woven Trim Belt
Forever 21
Double Braid Wide Belt

Belts are still a huge part of Fall 2009 fashion. Wear these cute woven stirrup belts at the waist, over a jacket or a dress! Check out more Fall 2009 fashion trends here: Fashion Trends for Fall 2009


Monday, September 21, 2009

Emmy 2009 Fashion!

From the top left: Hayden Pannetiere, Anna Torv, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Lindsay Price, and Blake Lively.

Some starlette's rocked the red, others rocked the purple and blue. But all look gorgeous in their bright colors! We love love love Julia and Lindsays gowns. GORGEOUS draping and black contrast pieces.

From the top left: Leighton Meester, Olivia Wilde, January Jones, Sandra Lee, Kate Walsh, and Kristen Chenowith.

White and shimmery dresses were also a huge trend on the 2009 Emmy red carpet. Kristen Chenowith rocked a mini version, while Olivia Wilde rocked a long fluttery version. And the silhouette on January Jones' dress is breathtaking!


Look of the week: Jared Leto

Jared Leto biked through NYC on Friday in some street chic clothing. He wore oversize dark sunglasses, a white v-neck tee, a maroon cardigan, grey trousers and a pair of brightly colored sneakers. The Culturistas love his fun, hipstery look.


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Style Profile: Blake Lively

Blake Lively's style is youthful, sexy and fun...not unlike her Gossip Girl character, Serena's style. Key pieces in Blakes wardrobe: Sky high heels, thick waist belts, rompers, and mini dresses.


Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Taste of Greece in Astoria: UNCLE GEORGE'S GREEK TAVERN

When you get off the train in Astoria, you might as well bring your passport because it now longer feels like America. There is an old world European feel and English is not the primary language spoken. Within one block you will find Greek, Egyptian, and Thai restaurants, Russian supermarkets, and Polish bakeries. We came across Unlce George's Greek Tavern which is an authentic gem run and populated by the thriving Greek community in Astoria. Not only was the food flavorful, but it was also highly affordable. We ordered Uncle George's Dip Platter which consisted of Tzatziki, garlic potato puree, eggplant dip, and fish roe. This melange of dips was served with warm pita. We also tried the chicken souvlaki which was tender pieces of kebab chicken. For under $20, this ultra-filling and delicious meal is a Culturistas must. Uncle George's Greek Tavern is also open 24 hours and is only two blocks from the Broadway stop on the N/W trains. Opa!

33-19 Broadway
Queens, NY 11106


Sunday, September 13, 2009

Look of the week: Penelope Cruz

Penelope Cruz attended the Toronto Film festival for a screening of her film "Broken Embraces." She wore a one shouldered RM by Roland Mouret dress with ivory Christian Louboutin heels. The drapery on the dress is just gorgeous! And we love this color- it looks great with her skin color! She accessorized with simple silver/diamond jewelry and an ivory clutch.


WTF? Kanye West and Amber Rose MTV VMAs 2009

I am probably playing right into their plan for publicity but I HAVE to comment on Kanye West and his girlfriend Amber Rose's ensembles to the MTV VMA's tonight. Kanye decided to sport a leather sleeveless top while carrying a bottle of Hennessy down the red carpet, which just seems weird? Not to mention the fact that I usually love his fashion forward style... But most obviously Amber is wearing an snake skin body suit! Not only is it unflattering and disturbing, it is hideous. This deserves a straight up Culturista "WTF!"

PS: I think Kanye might have been drinking too much Hennessey when he proceeded to get up on stage to diss Taylor Swift when she was receiving the award.


Friday, September 11, 2009

Trend Watch: Exposed High Midriff

Taylor Momsen attended a cocktail party in honor of designer Kris Van Assch on Tuesday, September 8th in NYC wearing one of the designer's duds.

We've been seeing the exposed high midriff trend lately and we LOVE it. It's the classier version of the midriff tops of the late 90's/early 2000's. And it's easy to wear this trend: just buy a high-waisted skirt and wear with a cropped bandeau style top!


Thursday, September 10, 2009

LA Greek Festival 2009

One of the Culturista's favorite things to do is to discover and learn from other cultures. And if you are in LA this weekend- you can taste the delicacies, watch traditional dances and even party with some Grecians! There is an awesome schedule of events including cooking classes, dance and theater shows, concerts and parties. Check out the full schedule here: LA Greek Festival Schedule.

Friday night (5pm-11pm): Admission is free!
Saturday (1pm-11pm): $5 Admission
Sunday (12pm-10pm): $5 Admission

For food lovers and chefs the L.A. Greek fest offers 18 pages of traditional Greek recipes on their site! I'll definitely be making these at home :) The festival is at Saint Sophia Cathedral at Pico and Normandy. The large grounds are going to have a theater, a cafe, a sports bar, wine tasting, beer garden, a children's arcade and so much more. Oh and Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson are the guest hosts again this year! Free and secure parking will be available nearby and shuttle service will be offered continuously to satellite lots.

Saint Sophia Cathedral
1324 S. Normandie Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90006


Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Catherine Malandrino hosts a street fair themed, “Paris Meets New York Marché’” in celebration of Fashion Night Out 2009 at the Meatpacking district boutique. From 6:00 -11:00pm shoppers are be invited for an eventful night of music, informal modeling, cocktails by Cointreau and chocolates by Marie Belle. Les Nubians will do a special performance at 10:00 PM. Come join the fete for Fashion Night Out!


Trend Watch: Metallic Skirt and Cut Out Boots

Top: Alexander Wang, $70
Skirt: Dolce and Gabbana, $ 1,384,24
Shoes: Christian Louboutin, $1,295
Clutch: Alexander McQueen, $1,595
Bracelet: Roberto Cavalli, $735
Necklace: Roberto Cavalli, $665

Jump into Fall with a hot metallic skirt and cut-out boots ! Pair your outfit with black and gold accessories and a edgy clutch.


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Look of the Week: Zachary Quinto

Zachary Quinto is oozing with some serious man style. He has received a lot of buzz for his recent role as Spock in Star Trek. Quinto is wearing torn jeans, a straw fedora, a rib-knit tank, and some urban kicks. Walking around with friends in LA, he looks effortlessly hip! The Culturistas love this!


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Meal Planning of the week: Asian Influence Recipes

Looking for an entire meal for a small dinner party? Look no further with this delicious Asian Inspired feast!

Asian-Style Halibut
Serves 6, takes a few hours to prepare and cook.


  • 2 1/2 lbs of Halibut
  • 2 Tbs of ginger
  • 12-15 cloves of garlic
  • 2 Tbs cilantro
  • 2 Tbs Green Onion
  • 6 Tbs brown sugar
  • 4 Tbs lemon juice
  • 6 Tbs rice wine
  • 3 green onions, sliced for garnish
  • 1/2 cup soy-sauce
  • 6 Tbs cooking rice wine
  • 6 Tbs dark sesame oil
  • 1 Tbs black pepper.


Blend ingredients together and marinade the Halibut in a zip-lock bag for a couple of hours.

Grill over high heat in fish basket or fish pan - approx about 6-8 minutes per side, baste with remaining sauce while grilling.

Wasabi Mashed Potatoes adapted from Sandra Lee's Food Network recipe
Serves 6, Takes around 30 mins to prepare


  • 2 pounds white potatoes, peeled and quartered (do not use Russet Potatoes!)
  • 4 ounces sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk or to preferred consistency
  • 3 teaspoons prepared wasabi
  • Salt and white pepper
  • 3 green onions, sliced for garnish
  • 1/4 teaspoon sesame oil


Put peeled and quartered potatoes in a large pot, cover with cold water, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to a simmer and cook until fork tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Drain and put potatoes in a large mixing bowl. With a handheld mixer on low speed or potato masher, break up potatoes. Add sour cream, butter, 1/4 cup buttermilk, and wasabi paste and whip potatoes on medium speed. Add more buttermilk until the desired consistency is reached. Season with salt and white pepper, to taste. Garnish with the green onions.

Some people are a bit scared of the wasabi flavor- but it is pretty subtle. If you are worried, use half the wasabi and taste it before adding it all in! If you like spicy flavors, add even more!

Asian Fried Bananas adapted from Paula Deen's Food Network recipe Serves 6, takes around 10 minutes to cook.


  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 6 fresh, firm bananas, peeled and cut into 1 to 2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon black sesame seeds
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • Vanilla Ice Cream


Heat a wok or a large frying pan over high heat and add 4 tablespoons of butter. Once melted, toss in bananas and add the 1/2 cup of sugar. Cook down sugar and add the sesame seeds and the lime juice. Stir together and serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Substitute with green tea ice cream for more of an Asian flare.


Friday, September 4, 2009

Labor Day Weekend: Electric Zoo Festival!

If you like beats and fests, you will not want to miss out on Electric Zoo Festival! Located On Randall's Island, which is situated on the East River close to Harlem and the Bronx, is accessible by subway or ferry. This unique event will feature a wide variety of electro-fabulous artists Saturday September 5th and Sunday September 6th from 11 AM to 11 PM. Aside from having an enormous grassy area where the festival will take place, Randall's Island also has a rich history and was once used as an asylum and refuge for war veterans and delinquents.

This Coachella style event will feature several artists loved by the Culturistas, most notably Armin Van Buuren, David Guetta, Steve Aoki, Busy P, the Junior Boys, Deadmaus and as you will see below a whole LOT more.

For more information on stage lineups, transportation, and ticket purchse please check the ELECTRIC ZOO FESTIVAL.

See you there RAIN or SHINE!


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

LA County Fair 2009- $1 Admission!

The LA County Fair starts this weekend, Saturday September 5th. And it runs until October 4th. But if you go this weekend before 1pm admission is only 1 dollar! If you decide to go after 1pm admission is $17. There are tons of fun things to do at the fair, something for everyone. There are concerts every night from groups like Lynard Skynard, Good Charlotte, Donna Summer, War, Ciara and the Beach Boys. General admission is free with entrance to the fair or you can buy reserved seating.

Concert this Saturday:

Al Green

Very Special Guest Star The Spinners
Saturday, Sept. 5
7:30 p.m.

There are over 70 thrilling rides, 40 games and all the delicious (albeit greasy) fair food you can eat. Apparently there will even be deep fried White Castle burgers....sounds pretty nasty, yet intriguing...

There are monster truck races, children's playhouses, a petting zoo, beer and wine tasting, and horse racing. Plus tons more... Get more information at the LA County Fair website.


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Bohemian Style

Dress Bohemian luxe on the cheap with great finds from Forever 21, Miss Selfridge, ModCloth, and American Eagle. The keys to dressing bohemian luxe: great textures (leather, suede, denim), extra details (studs, gold, fringe, feathers) relaxed attitude (wavy hair, natural makeup).

Dress: Forever 21 24.80
Vest: Miss Selfridge 55 Euros
Boots: ModCloth 52.99
Handbag: American Eagle 39.99
Floral RingModCloth 11.99
City of Angels Ring: ModCloth 11.99